WMO joins new partnership on renewable energy

A new partnership has been cemented to boost provision of targeted weather and climate information and services for renewable energy to help cut emissions of greenhouse gases and tackle climate change.

On 9 December, WMO and the United Nations Framework Convention for Climate Change both signed agreements with the Global Energy Interconnection Development and Cooperation Organization (GEIDCO) to promote efficient, resilient and renewable energy generation and use.

The agreement with GEIDCO provides for cooperation in the following areas:

  • Selection of potential sites globally for large-scale renewable energy systems, based on available research and analyses on wind and solar resource identification, regional and local conditions such as land cover, power-grid integration potential, and existing capacity.
  • Analysis of the impact of weather, climate variability, and climate change on the renewable energy resources such as hydro and wind power, to inform the national policy dialogue on the energy planning under climate change scenarios.
  • Pre-feasibility studies for clean energy systems with high potential for implementation investment, including (i) resource analysis of hydropower and wind power systems in regions such as East Africa, Southeast Asia and Northeast Asia, (ii) analysis of  the long-term climate change impact on clean energy resources, and (iii) analysis of socio-economic outcomes to guide the energy industry investments and decision-making in major projects.
  • Assessment of risks to power-generation infrastructure under climate extremes and climate change in selected regions, to provide support for energy operation, planning and management as well as to related decision-making.

The agreement will enable WMO to expand the provision of climate services for energy as a contribution to the implementation of the Global Framework for Climate Services. The occasion for the signing was the release of several reports at the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP25) focused on implementation of renewable energy systems on a scale and scope sufficient to achieve the temperature target of the Paris Agreement, of keeping the global temperature increase to less than 1.5°C or 2 °C above pre-industrial levels.

Since fossil energy combustion is the main source of global greenhouse gas emissions, accelerating de-carbonization of energy systems plays a fundamental and decisive role in addressing climate change.

WMO Secretary-General Petteri Taalas said that renewable energy currently only accounts for 15% of total consumption.

"Despite the commitments under the Paris Agreement, there is still no sign of a decline in greenhouse gas emissions or atmospheric concentrations from fossil fuel consumption", he told a thematic event at COP25 on 9 December.

“There is really a need for energy consumption to become carbon neutral,” he said, adding that a switch to clean energy would also tackle air pollution and improve public health.

“If you want an energy system based on solar or wind energy, you need good weather and climate forecasts and information. You have to know current and future climate conditions to get the best out of renewable energy systems,” said Mr Taalas.

More information available here.

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